February is LGBT+ History Month here in the UK so I’m planning to devote the majority of my reading to a lot of the LGBT+ fantasy on my TBR – I have quite a few f/f fantasy books to read and I am so excited – but Sarah-Jane @ The Book Life is also hosting a really fun readathon: Faebruary.
As you’ve probably guessed from the title, Faebruary is a readathon devoted to books that involve the Fae in some way. When it comes to fantastical or mythological creatures in books I’ve never really been one to gravitate towards the Fae – faeries and angels were the two types of paranormal romance I could never get into as a teen – but I’ve become a lot more interested in the Fae recently because there’s a real darkness to them.
You can find out more about this readathon in Sarah-Jane’s video here!
There are a few books I own that involve the Fae and I’d quite like to cross them off my TBR, so while I might not have the time to read all six I’m hoping to read at least one next month!
The Vanishing Throne
by Elizabeth May
Trapped. Aileana Kameron, the Falconer, disappeared through the fae portal she was trying to close forever. Now she wakes in an alien world of mirrors, magic, and deception—a prisoner of the evil fae Lonnrach, who has a desperate and deadly plan for his new captive.
Tortured. Time after agonizing time Lonnrach steals Aileana’s memories, searching for knowledge to save his world. Just when she’s about to lose all hope, Aileana is rescued by an unexpected ally and returns home, only to confront a terrifying truth. The city of Edinburgh is now an unrecognizable wasteland. And Aileana knows the devastation is all her fault.
Transformed. The few human survivors are living in an underground colony, in an uneasy truce with a remnant of the fae. It is a fragile alliance, but an even greater danger awaits: the human and fae worlds may disappear forever. Only Aileana can save both worlds, but in order to do so she must awaken her latent Falconer powers. And the price of doing so might be her life…
I read The Falconer literally years ago, was sent an eARC of this second book in the trilogy not long after finishing it and still haven’t read it because I am awful. I want to make a dent in my NetGalley reads this year so it’s time I got to this one!
Midnight Never Come
by Marie Brennan
England flourishes under the hand of its Virgin Queen: Elizabeth, Gloriana, last and most powerful of the Tudor monarchs.
But a great light casts a great shadow.
In hidden catacombs beneath London, a second Queen holds court: Invidiana, ruler of faerie England, and a dark mirror to the glory above. In the thirty years since Elizabeth ascended her throne, fae and mortal politics have become inextricably entwined, in secret alliances and ruthless betrayals whose existence is suspected only by a few.
Two courtiers, both struggling for royal favor, are about to uncover the secrets that lie behind these two thrones. When the faerie lady Lune is sent to monitor and manipulate Elizabeth’s spymaster, Walsingham, her path crosses that of Michael Deven, a mortal gentleman and agent of Walsingham’s. His discovery of the “hidden player” in English politics will test Lune’s loyalty and Deven’s courage alike. Will she betray her Queen for the sake of a world that is not hers? And can he survive in the alien and Machiavellian world of the fae? For only together will they be able to find the source of Invidiana’s power—find it, and break it…
I really enjoyed listening to the first two audiobooks in Marie Brennan’s The Memoirs of Lady Trent series last year, but I’ve owned this novel by her for a couple of years now and still haven’t read it which is ridiculous. Now only does it involve the Fae, but it’s also set during the Tudor era and I am obsessed with the Tudor era so it’s about time I read this one!
The Cruel Prince
by Holly Black
Jude was seven years old when her parents were murdered and she and her two sisters were stolen away to live in the treacherous High Court of Faerie. Ten years later, Jude wants nothing more than to belong there, despite her mortality. But many of the fey despise humans. Especially Prince Cardan, the youngest and wickedest son of the High King.
To win a place at the Court, she must defy him–and face the consequences.
In doing so, she becomes embroiled in palace intrigues and deceptions, discovering her own capacity for bloodshed. But as civil war threatens to drown the Courts of Faerie in violence, Jude will need to risk her life in a dangerous alliance to save her sisters, and Faerie itself.
Let’s face it: this is the Fae book that’s been all over the book blogging world for the past year. I feel like all I heard about throughout 2018 was how much everyone wanted to get their hands on The Wicked King which was just released this month. I still haven’t read this one because I’m wary of hype and I haven’t loved previous stuff I’ve read by Holly Black, but I’d really like to give this one a try and see if I enjoy it because it sounds pretty brutal and I’m down for some brutal Fae.
A Local Habitation
by Seanan McGuire
October “Toby” Daye is a changeling, the daughter of Amandine of the fae and a mortal man. Like her mother, she is gifted in blood magic, able to read what has happened to a person through a mere taste of blood. Toby is the only changeling who has earned knighthood, and she re-earns that position every day, undertaking assignments for her liege, Sylvester, the Duke of the Shadowed Hills.
Now Sylvester has asked her to go to the County of Tamed Lightning—otherwise known as Fremont, CA—to make sure that all is well with his niece, Countess January O’Leary, whom he has not been able to contact. It seems like a simple enough assignment—but when dealing with the realm of Faerie nothing is ever as simple as it seems. Toby soon discovers that someone has begun murdering people close to January, whose domain is a buffer between Sylvester’s realm and a scheming rival duchy. If Toby can’t find the killer soon, she may well become the next victim.
Considering how much I enjoy it I don’t read enough urban fantasy, but last year I finally started Seanan McGuire’s October Daye series when I read Rosemary and Rue. I haven’t continued with the series yet but Faebruary sounds like the perfect opportunity to read the second book in this huge series!
by Malinda Lo
In the wake of her father’s death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, rereading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.
The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash’s capacity for love-and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.
This f/f Cinderella retelling has been on my TBR for the longest time, and Faebruary is the perfect time to read it! Not only does it include the Fae, but it also counts towards my LGBT+ History Month Reads, my Retellings Reading Challenge and my Year of the Asian Reading Challenge, so this is the book I’d like to aim for if I can’t make time for any of the others.
Under the Pendulum Sun
by Jeannette Ng
Catherine Helstone’s brother, Laon, has disappeared in Arcadia, legendary land of the magical fae. Desperate for news of him, she makes the perilous journey, but once there, she finds herself alone and isolated in the sinister house of Gethsemane. At last there comes news: her beloved brother is riding to be reunited with her soon – but the Queen of the Fae and her insane court are hard on his heels.
This is another one I received from NetGalley and still haven’t read, and another one I can count towards the Year of the Asian Reading Challenge. I love the sound of this novel in which a Christian missionary has gone missing in the land of the Fae and his sister goes searching for him. It’s such a unique premise!
Ash is the one I’m going to prioritise because I can count it towards several reading challenges, but I’d also really like to cross the two eARCs off my TBR next month, too. It’s about time I read them!